Saturday, February 05, 2005

Traffic Report, Friday, February 04, 2005

Increased traffic means something else altogether sitting on the highway, barely stirring, on a Friday evening. The saddest thing lies not in the fact of it, but in the fact that we get used to it. Waiting for the brake lights to dim briefly to move forward.

So, this morning, back on the highway. After ten miles, the last full stream of traffic veers off, and we continue another thirty miles into higher elevations. Turn off at the Dismal Hollow -- aptly named -- winding, back and forth, beneath the highway. Light upon a Happy Creek , the rail cars rolling alongside. Hard turn on the Shores Road, crossing the tracks -- the valley coming into view. In the distance, the old North knob of Tree Tops stands forth. Pass by the Nurturing Mother. She is larger than before; but a larger, younger brood of hers suckles.

Wind down the Shores until it turns to gravel and comes towards an end. And, there she is -- the Daughter of the Moon and the Stars -- moving gently onward to the Place To Which Tribute Is Brought, where Oswatomie Brown came to set the captives free. The Old Man and the Stonewall once ran up and down her banks. Today, small gaggles of geese tread against her flow.

Another poor relation is here, shoring and restoring a cabin on stilts at the Daughter's edge. She is quiet now, as in most days; but, they say that if She ever rises up in fury and fullness, and sweeps away this abode, then the grandfather clause will pass, and they can build no more. But, the pillars here are strong -- two by two cinder block with veins of poured concrete and steel rod, fifteen feet into mother earth -- and the locals say She has never risen above the pillars.

Inside is cedar and a pot-bellied stove that glows with heat. Still some floor to be shod and such. On the cedar hang photos of poor relations -- some passed on -- the Mother, the Brother, the Wise Aunt; a picture of the Blessed Mother -- expectant, just beginning to show, moon and stars; a painting done by the Wise Aunt of a old, gravel road far away -- coming into view, curving slightly upwards, then passing out of view. Not a hint of traffic.


Blogger Gone Away said...

At first I thought: Hah, this is where we hear tales of a surge rather than a spike, acres of statistics are spread before us and links to colorful graphs are presented, perhaps even a mention of the Harmonic Convergence that hovers so ominously over Hereunder Mansion. But no, another form of traffic is reflected upon and another, more serene destination arrived at. A surprise, yes, but a pleasant one. I like it.

2/05/2005 07:37:00 PM  
Blogger Hannah said...

You could always ride a demon bike from hell ;)

2/05/2005 07:48:00 PM  
Blogger Harry said...

Never once mentioning a loon, yet one hears its clear call. Excellently put together.

2/05/2005 10:32:00 PM  
Blogger Ned said...

The trip away from the usual hustle and bustle to a quiet of mind and spirit was made more enjoyable by the puzzle and the history lesson.

2/06/2005 10:06:00 AM  
Blogger Remainderman said...

Ned --

It was all your humble Contributor could do to keep the otherwise omniscient Gone Away from figuring this out from the get go.

The names, I think, are all accurate. And, yes, much history in those parts.

2/06/2005 11:09:00 AM  
Blogger Ned said...

Well, he's a foreigner you know. You can't expect him to sway to the music of those Native American names just yet. I will admit to not knowing them all but the clues were there, just had to do a bit of searching to find them. It was a lovely bit of writing as well.

2/06/2005 12:39:00 PM  
Blogger Gone Away said...

The thing is beautiful, even though you are quite right: the Native American references flew straight over my head. How long does one have to suffer in ignorance before one can graduate from foreigner to immigrant, perchance and in the end, to be American?

2/06/2005 12:58:00 PM  
Blogger Remainderman said...

Gone Away asked: "How long does one have to suffer in ignorance before one can graduate from foreigner to immigrant, perchance and in the end, to be American?"

That would depend your good behavior -- we'll be keeping a close eye. (As a native, the "good behavior" requirement was waived for Harry. Life is not fair.)

2/06/2005 02:03:00 PM  
Blogger Gone Away said...

Well, I can say "y'all" already. That's pretty good, ain't it?

2/06/2005 04:20:00 PM  
Blogger Harry said...

It's now time to advance to "Gee Willikers". Willy (say it with me,) Will-EE, Will-EE, WilliKERS. Curz. Curz.

No, say "CURZ". Willi-KERS. Gee, I do believe he is getting it. Next week: Hot Day-yum.

2/07/2005 12:52:00 AM  
Blogger Gone Away said...

Amazing what one learns through blogging...

2/07/2005 07:03:00 AM  
Blogger Remainderman said...

We've noticed that the principle of entropy applies with special force, hereunder. Thus, no matter how hard your humble Contributor tries to introduce order to the place, it ends up looking like one of Hannah's demon bikes from hell has roared through.

2/07/2005 08:00:00 AM  
Blogger Gone Away said...

On behalf of us all, Remainderman, allow me to apologize. We'll try very hard in future not to make a mess of this fine mansion. And we appreciate your excellent efforts to keep the place tidy. It's just that we're so umm enthusiastic (yes, that seems a suitable euphemism).

On second thoughts, what am I saying? I refuse to attempt the impossible...

2/07/2005 12:32:00 PM  

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